The chamois looks like a goat-like antelope, its most distinctive characteristic being its white face, with black stripes just below the eyes. The chamois is mostly brown in coloration with a white rump, and a long, black stripe that runs down its back. Both the male and female chamois have horns, which are mostly straight, but hook backwards near the ends. The males, however, do possess thicker horns than the female.

Introduced to New Zealand in 1907 as a gift from the Austrian Emperor, Franz Joseph, six Does and two Bucks were transported from Wellington Harbour where they were landed, across the cook straight, down to christchurch by rail finishing with a 4-day horse trek to Mount Cook. In a relatively short time the population had exploded and spread over much of the South Island due to the lack of predators and abundance of food.  

As with Tahr, Chamois have had a huge negative impact on a number of our native plant species. Because of this there are no restrictions on Chamois hunting here in New Zealand in fact it is even encouraged by our Department of Conservation.